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Old Mar 11, 2006, 3:21 PM   #1
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Hi all, I got a Nikon 4100 about a year ago and have had no problems until recently. When I was on a cruise last week I took a bunch of pictures and many of them showed up black in the bottom left and top right corners. Some were only slightly noticable but others had a great deal of the picture blackened! Is my camera broke? Can it be fixed? Or should I just toss it? I've included an attachment of an example of what it's doing.
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Old Mar 11, 2006, 3:33 PM   #2
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It almost looks like vignetting, accept that usually shows up in more than one or two places. Did you recently get some kind of lens attachment for using filters or a lens hood?

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Old Mar 12, 2006, 12:39 AM   #3
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Nope no changes made to the cam. One day it worked fine the next it did this. Btw I fixed the attachment so it shows now.
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Old Mar 12, 2006, 7:13 PM   #4
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I have a cp3100, and it has a sort of mechanical "lens cap" that is supposed to retract when the camera is turned on. If the 4100 has the same type of thing, it could be that something is preventing a couple segments of this curtain from retracting fully -- a little warp from something hitting the front of the lens, a piece of grit...

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Old Mar 12, 2006, 8:05 PM   #5
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Is there any way to do anything about it?
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Old Mar 13, 2006, 8:22 PM   #6
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First, is this the problem? Hold the camera so that the lens is facing you and then turn it on. If it has the same sort of retracting "lens cap" as the 3100 you will see the segments pull back into the lens barrel to expose the front lens element. If the segments don't pull back all the way, you should be able to see it plainly. If they don't open all the way you just have to inspect the segments closely and observe their action when you turn the camera on and off.
If you see a problem, then there is either a foreign body of some sort stuck in the path the segment uses to retract, a small warp in one or more segments preventing a full range of motion or a problem with the internal mechanical system responsible for the segments motion.
How to fix it if one of these is the case....?
I guess you just have to use your imagination. If a few segments don't retract, try pushing them toward their open position gently with a Q-tip, or something, to see if it moves. If it does, that might dislodge a piece of lint that was hanging it up. You could try applying suction to that area with a vacuum cleaner with a crevise tool attached. If that doesn't do anything, maybe a couple blasts from one of those cans of compressed air. That could force a piece of junk further up, though, which is why the vacuum sounds better to start with.
This is lame, but if you can't get the segments to retract on their own but you can push them back easily manually, you could maybe hold a segment in the fully retracted position with a small, slender piece of scotch tape. That would allow you to take pictures without the dark corners, but you'd have to remember to pull the tape off before you turn the camera off.
Now, if the mechanical curtains are not the problem, I've got nothing else up my sleave.

Grant
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